May 1, 2014 - May Day
Today is the first of May, also known as May Day. This is a holiday celebrated in European countries since pagan times. It is a time for celebrating the arrival of summer. I know, hardly seems possible in these climes, but once upon a time February 1st was considered the start of spring and May 1st was considered the start of summer which is how the summer solstice on June 21st was considered "midsummer". Celebrations - sometimes raucous because, after all, it is summer!-were combined with dancing around a maypole, crowning the Queen of the May, and the giving of May baskets. These celebrations are related to the festival of Flora (goddess of flowers) in Rome, Beltane in Celtic countries, and Walpurgis Night in Germany. May 1st is also International Worker's Day. That day celebrates labor and the working classes and is a national public holiday in a number of countries. That holiday is celebrated by marches and rallies. May 1st was chosen for this international celebration of labor because it was the day in 1886 when the Haymarket Riot occurred in Chicago. Any way you look at it, there are many reasons to celebrate today. One of the best reasons is that the weather is finally getting warm enough for you to enjoy being outside long enough to dance around a maypole, deliver May baskets or join a rally. It does look like April's showers may be extending into the month of May. Fortunately,we have plenty of new books for you to read while waiting for the sun to come out. Enjoy!
- Dirty daddy : the chronicles of a family man turned filthy comedian / by Bob Saget. Proudly embracing his dark and dirty side, the star of both "Full House" and "America's Funniest Home Videos" opens up about some of his personal experiences with life and death, his career and his reputation for sick humor.
- Everybody's got something / by Robin Roberts. The beloved "Good Morning America" anchor shares the incredible journey that's been her life so far and the lessons she learned along the way as she battled breast cancer and a rare blood disorder and dealt with the death of her mother.
- Struck by genius : how a brain injury made me a mathematical marvel / by Jason Padgett. After a violent mugging forever altered the way his brain works, the author, the first documented case of acquired savant syndrome with mathematical synesthesia, recounts how he overcame huge setbacks and embraced his unique gifts.
- Strong mothers, strong sons : lessons mothers need to raise extraordinary men / by Margaret Meeker. Builds on the techniques introduced in "Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters" to counsel moms on how to promote health and success in boys, sharing related advice on rebuilding positive mother-son bonds
- The bill of the century : the epic battle for the Civil Rights Act / by Clay Risen. Offers a full account of the complex battle to get the Civil Rights bill passed.
- Bourbon : a history of the American spirit / by Dane Huckelbridge. This spirited history of bourbon whiskey traces its origins in the backwoods of Appalachia to the multi-billion dollar international bourbon whiskey industry today and introduces the colorful cast of characters central to its creation and development.
- Hunting the president : threats, plots, and assassination attempts-- from FDR to Obama / by Mel Ayton. Highlights the lesser-known attempts on the lives of various U.S. Presidents, including the man that stalked Roosevelt 10 ten days across Pennsylvania Avenue, and a Cuban immigrant who planned to attack LBJ's motorcade.
- Chestnut Street / by Maeve Binchy. A story written in stages throughout the best-selling author's career traces the experiences of diverse characters that revolve around Chestnut Street. By the author of "Tara Road".
- Otherwise engaged / by Amanda Quick. Barely escaping a would-be abductor who has left a trail of victims in his wake, world traveler Miss Amity Doncaster discovers that her attacker has become obsessed with gossip that ties Amity to scientist Benedict Stanbridge, a spy for the throne who resolves to bring the killer to justice.
- Keep quiet / by Lisa Scottoline. When they are involved in a terrible car accident, Jake Whitmore makes a split-second decision that saves his son from formal punishment, but plunges them both into a world of guilt, lies and secrecy where a dangerous enemy comes forward threatening to expose them.
- The target / by David Baldacci. The highly skilled assassin who brought in a rogue assassin "The Hit" and who became a target himself when he refused a mission in "The Innocent" returns for his third adventure in the best-selling series.
- Warriors / by Ted Bell. As tensions mount between China, North Korea and the US, Alex Hawke and Inspector Ambrose Congreve, after China reveals military technology that is more advanced than anything the US and Great Britain possess, must infiltrate China and neutralize the source of their advantage to stop World War III.